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An Open Letter to BACX Management

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An Open Letter to BACX Management

Old 17th Dec 2002, 10:08
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Scourge of Bad Airline Management!
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An Open Letter to BACX Management

Dear... I hesitate to use the word "Sir"

As a very frequent traveller from Cardiff on BACX - 46 sectors this year, all but two in C class - I have to ask the following:

1. Given that you seem quite happy to turn away bookings in business class - continuous reports of reservations telling people that C is full, when it is not abound - did you PLAN to close these routes whatever?

2. Why do you regard Cardiff as a second rate destination? You moan that you couldn't generate enough traffic on the route - and yet you didn't advertise in South Wales, you only gave lower fares when you had to, and you kept the sword of Damocles hanging over your services for so long that people did not feel safe to book with you; pathetic;

3. How did you get into positions of management when clearly the effective organisation of a whelk stand is beyond you?

4. Why do you treat customers like me with such contempt? At your fares, 44 sectors is 20,000. Read and digest that number. 20K. Now, I get NO service from you. Well, thanks.

5. Can you give me ONE - Just One - good reason why I or my firm should spend another penny with an organisation like yours, that seems not to give a damn for its staff, customers or their businesses?

Well, stuff you. I'm off to join someone else's frequent flyer scheme. I urge all your other business customers to do the same.

My sympathies are with your staff - the hardworking, cheerful crowd who maintained a great service out of Cardiff DESPITE your efforts. As for you, management morons - I hope you all choke on your turkey.

As someone who works with the management of other airlines, please feel free to contact me. I know you won't - god forbid that someone could show you just how incompetent you are.

TA
Ex BACX Customer.
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 10:27
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Fly KLM to AMS. The world is then your oyster!
BA appear to have bought the regionals just so they can chop them and look as if they're doing something instead of tackling the real problems at mainline.
They don't seem to get the point that their customers do not all originate from London.
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 10:32
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Hello
Talking of CWL, I do think that BMI Baby will take advantage of this and launch services from CWL to CDG and BRS, as this would be quite simple as these destinations are already served from EMA. What do you think?
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 10:35
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Wink

CWL to BRS might not be viable unless there are plans to hike the bridge tolls somewhat. However, at 6 minutes, it would be a nice little earner in terms of sector pay...

Or did you mean BRU?

WWW
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 10:43
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Twin Aisle raises some good points. I have never had the opportunity to travel C class from Cardiff International Airport (CIA) (that's what happens when you only fly domestic from your local airport) but I don't understand how it has got into this mess. The domestic flights I have taken have all been close to capacity, so I fail to see how the airline is loss making from Cardiff. Therefore, was the operation set up knowing that the routes would not make money or have I been on the wrong flights. The latter is pretty difficult due to the already restricted number of options available.

It is certainly very true that airlines - not just BA - spend very little money advertising the fact that they fly from Cardiff. BMIBaby have recently started flying from there - the only advertising I have seen is their TV sponsorship of the HTV Wales weather - and that was by chance as I can't stand watching regional 'news' with typical headlines like 'rambler leaves gate open' and 'paper blows across road'. I digress...

Perhaps what Cardiff Airport and the airlines should have done is actually tell the South Wales area that they exist. Does anyone in Wales know that there is an airline called Air Wales? CIA seem to be like most other organisations in the UK - if we build it, people will use it. Errr no - if you build it and make sure people know about it and you have the services people want, then, if the price is right, people might use it. Cardiff seems to rely on a relatively few number of business travellers, such a Twin Aisle, and then the summer charters carting locals to the Costas and Greek isles etc.

Given it's already extremely limited non-EU services, after cutting it's Paris and Brussels services, Cardiff International airport might want to consider a name change.
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 10:54
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Nick 24

Good post. As one who hails originally from Cardiff, I agree entirely that this airport has never been marketed properly. Mind you, being hidden in the fastness of rural Glamorgan with rotten transport infrastructure doesn't help. It badly needs a spur from the M4 and perhaps even a rail loop from the Paddington - Swansea main line. All this, of course, requires a joined up transport policy.

Small point of information. The code for Cardiff is CWL. If you make a booking for CIA, you'll find yourself in Rome!
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 10:55
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KLM? No way

As for KLM - I have lost track of the number of times I have come off the BA from BRU or CDG and seen a very embarrassed KLM rep having to apologise to the AMS people that the boys and girls at Schiphol have not loaded the bags. No thanks - as a business traveller, I cannot possibly risk that sort of foul-up.

As for bmiBaby - I think they may well jump in - but that still gives the connection problem. I use (used to use) BA to connect to other OneWorld carriers in CDG and BRU (AA, CX etc etc) and bmiBaby won't let you do that. More's the pity.

Still no news from BACX management btw. Not holding my breath.

One interesting point.... another of my frequent traveller friends is a certain N Kinnock - VC of the European Commission, former Transport Commissioner and South Wales and Brussels resident. Wonder what he is going to say to BACX management - or indeed his MEP wife??

TA
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 11:00
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Thanks Pirate - you might also find that if you make a booking for CIA, you could end up at Cardiff International Arena...
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 11:27
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CWL BRS

The long haul version of Westray - Papa Westray.

 
Old 17th Dec 2002, 11:32
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SHORT haul...

I have actually flown BRS-CWL (with KLM - spit!) and CWL-BRS (with BA - when SN went the way of all flesh, they were doing slipstops in BRS on the way to BRU).

You sort of get to 100 feet and arrive with Severn mud and washing line around the undercarriage...

TA
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 11:43
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Most of the Cambrian Airways routes out of CWL used to route via BRS outbound and inbound to places like GLA, CDG etc etc.

Seemed to work till BA got their hands on the company big time!

MP
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 12:40
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A Prediction...

BA will never return to Cardiff.

Now they have canned the BRU and CWL services, someone with some management nouse, ambition and ability will pick up the licences (are you there, Tony Davis?) and will

a. Offer better fares
b. Offer a bigger aircraft
c. Not treat their staff and customers with contempt
d. Advertise and fill those 737s

Result? BA will get a bloody nose (having it proved to them that CWL can pay) - but will never admit it.

And there will be no room for BA at CWL again. Which is a shame for those BA loyalists - sorry, those FORMER BA loyalists - in this neck of the woods....

TA
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 16:23
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Get behind your welsh national carrier who may jump in on these routes with the new ATR's arriving in the new year, and find out what it's like to get a real personal service instead of being treated as just one of the masses.
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Old 17th Dec 2002, 17:17
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Twin Aisle, thanks for your comments regarding the CWL crews, it's nice to know someone appreciates our hard work.

I was displaced when they pulled the J41 out and since the been temporarily based at NCL. The crews up there have also worked very hard to try and create an efficient and professional operation (in frequently difficult cirsumstances) and they have been a real credit to the base and a pleasure to work with.

I wish them and my ex Embraer collegues at CWL as well as the rest of the people affected today all the best and hope that everything works out for them.

Oh by the way the Severn Bridge toll is going up to 4.50 in Jan so maybe someone will find CWL-BRS viable!!
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Old 19th Dec 2002, 10:43
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A big thank you to Twin Aisle for his generous words. It is nice to know our struggles to keep a good service going from CWL, despite the best efforts of BA management, were appreciated by the people that really matter. To make sure eveyone at the base sees it (including the management who are rampant this week) I'll print it out and stick it on the notice board. I know it will be appreciated.

I think anyone who saw David Evans interviewed on BBC news this week can be left in no doubt of the utter contempt for Wales held by BA management. The statement that BA still serves Wales through BRS and BHX was particularly insensitive not only to the BA staff affected at CWL but also to many of our loyal customers - who Mr Evans seems to forget pay his wages as well !

People won't travel to BRS and BHX but will go on BMI who I'm sure will take over the route. We may well have been competing with ourselves but surely that is better than competing with yet another airline we have allowed on the route from this area. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot ! The BRS loads are going to disappear when Air France and Easyjet really get going from BRS.

CWL did make money, not a lot I'll accept, but was in a strong position to grow and the routes were getting stronger with the new pricing structure. That despite the fact that no advertising took place in South Wales and most people I met thought that an average return fare would be in excess of 500 ! Ironically when BMI announce the route all these same people will use it and pay just as much as they would have on BA ! I can't believe people still haven't woken up to the low cost con !

What is most galling of all is that we have been told that our two aircraft are needed and will be more profitable elsewhere - on the BRS-NCL, yes I'm sure that will make pots of money ! But we have two perfectly servicable 145s rotting on the Island because they have been notionally sent back to Embraer - although as a company we are desperate for their services. How much money do we ps away to TITAN EVERY DAY !

As for Air Wales I would love to see them succeed. I know a lot of them personally and are a great bunch of people - other than their new management which is apparently flushing all their good will rapidly down the toilet ! The problem is times have changed and the ATR will not compete - not at CWL anyway. Swansea is their future and I fear it may be a bleak one. Welsh prosperity ends ironically at Cardiff International Airport. West of that is still pretty much short of the spare cash to make serious routes out of SWN viable.

All is not well unless you wear or want to wear a red puffer jacket and I have my doubts about that too when the outrageous WDA subsidy runs out !

Still all water under the bridge now.

See you in BHX ! (I doubt it)
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Old 19th Dec 2002, 23:39
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Now I'm a little (just a little!) less angry about this... let me be a little more forensic....

There are only a few reasons why a route won't pay.

1. Wrong route (no pax at A want to go to B, or connect there)
2. Wrong aircraft (too big, less good than the competitors)
3. Wrong times
4. Lousy cabin service
5. Lousy ground service
6. Mad pricing
7. Management ineptitude.

And the answers are??

1. Hardly - if they were wrong, why can BMI Baby run some of them just fine, and seems desperate for the others?
2. Unlikely - the 145 is a good regional aircraft that others make money off;
3. Unlikely - some out of CWL were hopeless, like BHD, but CDG, BRU, EDI, GLA were just fine;
4. Nope - all the regulars loved it;
5. A bit iffy thanks to Aviance.... but not BRS style appalling, and they make money there...
6. 75 retn to CDG can't be bad..... yeah, you bleed if you fly C or Y class, but only people like me with generous employers do that anyway... and it's no worse than the equivalent fares from LHR, BRS, etc etc

Which leaves..... ah! Bingo. (Speaking of the halfwits.... I loved the quote about "we can't fly from every bit of tarmac in Britain" - does that mean that Barra, Newquay, and, for God's sake Papa Westray are higher priority than Cardiff????)


Just another thought.... had a phone call tonight from BA about a reservation I have from CWL to BRU on the 5/1 (fine) and the return on the 8/1 - CANCELLED. It seems the Brussels is dead far sooner than March.... when I told them that I wanted a full refund, they offered me a reroute through BRS (no ta) or BHX (laughable). I want a refund, I'll fly SN, and use my Qualiflyer card, thanks all the same. Now wait for this - this is my transcript of my conversation, which made me MAD, so it may not be 100%.

BA: "I'm sorry that you won't be flying BA on this occasion, but I would point out that we now have more services than ever from London City"
TA: "So? What use is that?"
BA: "It's a significant addition to our network sir"
TA: "So it may be - so might Hong Kong to Macau be, but that is academic if I'm in Cardiff and want to go to Brussels"
BA: "We can just swap your ticket for Heathrow to Brussels"
TA: "No - that means a 150 mile drive"
BA: "Oh, it's not that far sir"
TA: "Can I have your name? I want to buy you an atlas for Christmas"
BA: "Well, I am sorry that you are no longer loyal to BA...."

At which point, I confess, I lost it with this a@@ehole....

How can they question their customers' loyalty, when it is THEM that have ******ed off, not us???

I really hope that all the folks who fly with BACX get sorted quickly. We'll really miss you. (You know that bmiBaby are looking for cabin crew btw??)

With best wishes, respect and a lot of affection.

TA
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Old 22nd Dec 2002, 16:48
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Red face Unbelievable

TwinAisle are you serious...?

BA: "Well, I am sorry that you are no longer loyal to BA...."

If they say something like that to a customer , then they really have lost the plot and deserve to have no passengers... period.
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Old 22nd Dec 2002, 17:14
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Hi Meeb

It made me mad as well. Could not believe what he said. For the record, this year I have made the following trips:

Concorde - 1 sector
BA First - 1 sector
BA Club (Most from Cardiff) - 46 sectors
BA Economy - 6 sectors
BA Partner - 21 sectors
Other Airline - 5 sectors

This is disloyal??

Next year? Nothing booked with BA!

TA
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Old 23rd Dec 2002, 08:06
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Hi twin isle. I have been using the Cardiff and Bristol service of KL Cityhopper quite a bit and had no problems with it. Now with the F70 it is even better. The one thing I don't like is the circle flight, that makes no sense to me unless it is for sightseeing purposes.

As for the airport: Who put it there in the first place.... it is a place that needs advertising otherwise you would not find it!
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Old 27th Dec 2002, 10:04
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It almost appears that Anne Robinson has become the new CEO of BA *hityExpress
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